Employee’s P.I. Claim v. Co-Worker Denied After Car Crash

Posted on: June 26th, 2012       Attorney Thomas Newell

A December 2008 Opinion of the Superior Court of Pennsylvania clarified the circumstances when an employee can make a PA personal injury claim against a fellow employee after a car accident. Two employees of a Montgomery County PA business used a company pick-up truck to drive to Baltimore to make repairs at a work site. After leaving the job, they stopped for dinner and both employees drank beer.

On the return trip to Pennsylvania, the driver lost control of the pick-up truck. The crash caused the passenger to sustain serious head injuries. The Pennsylvania car accident lawyer filed a lawsuit versus the driver in Philadelphia. The trial judge held that the driver’s actions in driving back to PA were work related for his employer’s benefit. Therefore, the co-employee was barred by the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act from making a PA personal injury claim.

The Pennsylvania car crash lawyer filed an appeal. The Superior Court confirmed that Worker’s Compensation benefits are the only remedy available to employees injured in a car accident due to the negligence of a co-employee while in the course and scope of their employment. The Court did not grant an exception to the Pennsylvania car crash victim since the driver was not convicted of DUI and no proof was provided that the alleged intoxication caused the collision. EMC v. Boiler Erection